Friday, September 25, 2009

Dan Brown, Science, and Christianity

Dan Brown from the September 25, 2009 Parade interview:

Are you religious?

I was raised Episcopalian, and I was very religious as a kid. Then, in eighth or ninth grade, I studied astronomy, cosmology, and the origins of the universe. I remember saying to a minister, "I don't get it. I read a book that said there was an explosion known as the Big Bang, but here it says God created heaven and Earth and the animals in seven days. Which is right?" Unfortunately, the response I got was, "Nice boys don't ask that question." A light went off, and I said, "The Bible doesn't make sense. Science makes much more sense to me." And I just gravitated away from religion

This underscores how important it is to present a scientifically credible Christian worldview. Of course the universe was not created in seven days, but six. The seventh day was the Sabbath. And, of course, the Big Bang supports creation ex nihilo. And we need not insists that each "day" was 24 hours. One could go on--and I do in my next week--sure to be a blockbuster best-seller. It is called The Apologetics Code.


CotnerMD said...

My experience was completely different from Dan Brown's.

I grew up believing in evolution from my cradle. My parents were not religious. I don't think we owned a Bible. When I was in Junior High, I learned about Jesus and became a Christian.

In High School, I became troubled by the conflict between my evolutionary upbringing and what I read in the book of Genesis. My pastor had no answers for me either, but I did not fall away from my faith. I was confused, but I felt like Peter when he said, "Lord, to whom shall we go? You have the words of eternal life. We believe and know that you are the Holy One of God."

For years, I just tried to avoid thinking about the whole subject of origins, which was very difficult at times, especially during my pre-medical and medical education. A few years ago, I was discussing my uncertainties with my wife, and she challenged me to revisit the subject. I began to read voraciously about naturalism, creationism and intelligent design.

I am very glad that I faced my anxieties and searched the subject out. I now see what I know about human physiology and biochemistry in an entirely different light. I feel today that I could not believe in atheistic abiogenesis or Neo-Darwinian evolution, even if I were not a Christian.

God was very gracious to me and preserved me through my years of episodic doubt and discouragement. I don't know what happened to Dan Brown, but it didn't have to turn out that way. He did not have to walk away from Christ.

Ken Abbott said...

Brian--My experience was very similar. Vividly I recall my reaction in one biology class as the intricacies of DNA translation chemistry were laid out. Who could possibly conclude that such elegance and precision was the result of blind, purposeless processes? I would be interested to learn what sources during your investigations you found particularly useful.

CotnerMD said...


I'm sorry so long in responding, I have been heavily occupied.

I would be glad to suggest some resources if you would tell me what kind of thing you are looking for.

Email me at modok68ATyahooDOTcom -- substitute the appropriate symbols -- and I will try to help.

pgepps said...

You might like to look at Dr. William Varner's blog post on The Lost Symbol.

He joins me in smirking at the notion of a Harvard chair in "Symbology."